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Seal: Standards

Read "Standards" reviewed by Karl Ackermann

It shouldn't be a surprise that Seal would take on the American songbook, with a baritone that was made for classics like “Autumn Leaves" and “Love for Sale." Born Henry Olusegun Adeola Samuel in Paddington, England, the singer, guitarist and composer rose to fame with his global hits, and Grammy-winning songs, “Crazy" and “Kiss From a ...


Imelda May: Life. Love. Flesh. Blood.

Read "Life. Love. Flesh. Blood." reviewed by Doug Collette

Collaborating with Jeff Beck, Imelda May's kitschy presence as preserved for posterity on the iconic guitar hero's Rock 'n' Roll Party (Honoring Les Paul) (Atco, 2011)is in stark contrast to the sultry black and white portrait that adorns Life. Love. Flesh. Blood.

Not surprisingly, then, the British chanteuse stakes out an equally sensuous, shadowy ...

Benedicta: Marian Chant from Norcia

Read "Benedicta: Marian Chant from Norcia" reviewed by C. Michael Bailey

The mid-1990s so-called “new age" or “ambient" music discovered the Plainsong, leading to the release of Chant (Angel, 1973/1994) by the Benedictine Monks of Santo Domingo de Silos. Such a spike in popularity in all things mystical was nothing novel at the end of the Twentieth Century (or any other post-civilization century, for that matter). Judging ...


John Williams: Guitar Recital

Read "John Williams: Guitar Recital" reviewed by AAJ Staff

John Williams

Guitar Recital

Decca Records

1996 (1959)

In 1958, guitar virtuoso John Williams was a gifted teenager, and had studied with Andres Segovia. In that year he recorded an album of primarily Segovia-inspired (or themed) compositions from the growing classical guitar repertoire. The album, Guitar Recital (originally released on ...


Elton John / Leon Russell: The Union

Read "The Union" reviewed by C. Michael Bailey

Elton John and Leon Russell are not so unlikely musical colleagues. Russell is slightly the elder, at 68 to John's 63, and within the age difference of two brothers. Both emerged in the early '70s, that fertile period nurtured by Woodstock the year before, and the rise of album-oriented-rock FM radio after. Both are pianists and ...


David Sanborn: Only Everything

Read "Only Everything" reviewed by Joel Roberts

Only Everything is alto saxophonist David Sanborn's second straight release paying homage to one of his greatest and earliest influences, Ray Charles. While some jazz purists may dismiss Sanborn as a slick TV personality and practitioner of smooth or pop jazz, he's always had firm roots in bluesy, R&B-based jazz, dating to his early days playing ...


Roberta Gambarini: So In Love

Read "So In Love" reviewed by C. Michael Bailey

In his book The Jazz Singers: The Ultimate Guide, music writer Scott Yanow presents a list of the 30 most important jazz singers. One name most likely to join that group, Yanow believes, is that of Roberta Gambarini. Very quickly, this talented Italian singer has established herself as an artist to be considered seriously in the ...


Danilo Perez: Across the Crystal Sea

Read "Across the Crystal Sea" reviewed by Chris M. Slawecki

At its most basic, Crystal Sea features pianist Danilo Perez leading a quartet with bassist Christian McBride and drummer Lewis Nash, supported by percussionist Luis Quintero. Cassandra Wilson radiates vocals through two standards, “Lazy Afternoon" and “(All of a Sudden) My Heart Sings." Beyond these two standards, Claus Ogerman, who arranged and conducted the orchestra, contributes ...


David Sanborn: Here & Gone

Read "Here & Gone" reviewed by Andrew Velez

Alto saxophonist/flutist David Sanborn has been associated with everything from electronica, fusion and disco-tinged recordings to Svengali (Atlantic, 1973), a now-classic set he recorded with Gil Evans. Although he's acknowledged as having been influenced by Hank Crawford, Charlie Parker and Jackie McLean, he's not easily categorizable. Other musical partners have been as diverse as Billy Butterfield ...


Charlie Haden Family & Friends: Rambling Boy

Read "Rambling Boy" reviewed by AAJ Italy Staff

Nell’album di famiglia c’è posto per tutti. Ci sono papà Carl e mamma Virginia. I fratelli maggiori, Carl Jr. e Jim. Poi un piccolissimo Charlie che sorride. Si va avanti, e foto dopo foto, di generazione in generazione ecco spuntare figli, moglie e amici. Charlie Haden a 71 anni riparte dai ricordi. Riparte da quando, a due anni ...